Thursday, April 7, 2016

The Real Rock Stars

This year has been filled with wonderful opportunities for professional growth. It started with the Level Up 2.0 PD put on by our very own district and brought in the talent of Eric Sheninger. I had been following him on Twitter for some time and was thrilled to have the opportunity to meet him. From Ted Talks to his books on digital leadership he was a wealth of information in our own school!

Later, during our annual MEMSPA (Michigan Elementary & Middle School Principals Association) conference, I had the opportunity to meet and learn from George Couros, author of "The Innovator's Mindset". I felt a connection with George and that he was genuinely interested in my writing and helping me grow as an educator. We still keep in touch and I'm excited to announce that he will be coming to Livonia in the fall as our keynote speaker for Level Up 3.0!

In February, I got the chance to meet the Pirate himself, Dave Burgess. His book, "Teach Like a Pirate" has become my go to book and philosophy of education and became the subject of an all school book study and the theme for our entire year. I made the comment when I met Dave before his presentation that I felt like I was backstage at a rock concert! That wasn't too far off.

Most recently, several teachers and I went to the MACUL (Michigan Association for Computer Users in Learning) conference where I had the opportunity to meet the celebrated Shannon Miller. Shannon's talent and dedication have brought her all over the world for speaking engagements and I was fortunate to meet her and learn from her.

What makes these events and people so special to me are that they are the ones changing education, blazing trails, and inspiring others. Some people get excited about celebrities (okay, meeting Willam Shatner was pretty cool) and some people get excited about sports stars (I still want to meet Michael Jordan), but I think the real rock stars are the heroes of education. The pirates, the innovators, the inspired leaders who challenge us, motivate us, and encourage us to find new and better ways to help each child succeed. Professional growth for me comes when I'm inspired to learn more and be more. I was lucky to meet some of the "real rock stars" of education this year who helped me do just that!
Hanging with the Education Rock Stars!


"I'm a rock star because I couldn't be a soccer star." - Rod Stewart

"I was never interested in being a rock star. I always wanted to be Boris Karloff." - Gene Simmons

"I won't be a rock star. I will be a legend." - Freddie Mercury


Digital Leadership: Changing Paradigms for Changing Times by Eric Sheninger

The Innovator's Mindset: Empower Learning, Unleash Talent, and Lead a Culture of Creativity by George Couros

Teach Like a Pirate: Increase Student Engagement, Boost Your Creativity, and Transform Your Life as an Educator by Dave Burgess

The Library Voice (blog by Shannon McClintock Miller) and author of a forthcoming series of children's books and a professional book focused on being the change within the school library and education


Monday, April 11: Celebrate Monday Assembly 9:05 am
                             IEP (Sherry Lynn & Shannon) 2:30 pm
Tuesday, April 12: 3rd Grade Field Trip in afternoon
                               District School Improvement Team 5:30-7:30 pm
Wednesday, April 13: Achievement Team (Debbie) 8:00 am
Thursday, April 14: Staff Meeting 8:00 am (MACUL Overview)
Friday, April 15: No Students / Teacher Work Day

Monday, April 18: Celebrate Monday Assembly 9:05 am
Thursday, April 21: Staff Meeting 8:00 am with special guest Andrea Oquist
Friday, April 22: Report Cards sent home (with Camp Frost Invites)

Monday, April 25: 3rd Grade M-Step Testing Window opens
Wednesday, May 4: Arts,Beats,Eats&Books 
Monday, May 9: 4th Grade M-Step Testing Window opens
Friday, May 13: F&P Data Entry Due
Monday, May 16: Final Data Dive
Tuesday, May 24: Volunteer Tea
Friday, June 3: Spring Fling
Thursday, June 16: Last Day for Students (12:10 dismissal)

*Rosedale Staff: Text or Email me one way you will Celebrate Monday and there will be a treat in your mailbox on Monday:)*


  1. This is a great article, Jon! I first felt that "rock star" feeling in grad school when we met the authors of the English Ed books we were studying. Like you, I was inspired by their work and by how they are extraordinary and normal at the same time. You've given me some great ideas for people to follow and read. Thank you!

  2. Great post Jon! I, too, follow these individuals of education innovation and have found affirmation that the work I am doing is the right work. These people & my new Tribe inspire me to be a connected leader so my students will ultimately benefit!